Tokyobling's Blog

Patlabor – Roppongi Hills

Posted in Places by tokyobling on November 1, 2014

If you are into the manga, anime and now proper movie, Patlabor, you should most definitely head over to Roppongi Hills as soon as possible to check out the scale 1:1 Mobile Police mecha suit they have on show right now. I walked past it yesterday and took these photos. It is really quite cool. I was a big fan of this manga many years ago, when it was still set in the future. These days a manga set in 1998-2002 does not feel quite as SF.

The movie this prop is promoting has an official site here, and it looks pretty cool. The reason it is in Roppongi is most likely due to the Tokyo Movie Festival taking place last week.

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Bandai HQ Anime Statues – Kuramae

Posted in Places by tokyobling on March 28, 2014

Bandai, one of Japan’s biggest toy companies and certainly the most famous Japanese toy company in the world (ever heard of Tamagochi?), has their corporate headquarters and showrooms in Tokyo’s Kuramae district, not far from Asakusa. Well, they were independent until 2006 when they merged with entertainment giant Namco and is now part of the Bandai-Namco group. When I was a kid we didn’t have any Japanese toys but we did have a battered old Bandai toy catalog that was handed around like a treasured tract promising toys that we kid could only dream of.

I passed their HQ a little while ago and took these photos of the spanking new statues showing some of the main characters of their most famous brands and games. How many can you recognize? Even after having been a Bandai fan all of my life i had trouble naming all of these. To find them simply walk along the main street from Asakusa towards Asakusabashi Station or Kuramae station, along the Edo Street or Edo-doori.

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Dragon Ball vs. One Piece Street Battle

Posted in Places, Stuff by tokyobling on March 19, 2014

One of Japan’s biggest toy companies, Bandai, teamed up with 45th year anniversary Shonen Jump comics magazine to produce an epic multi-player fighting game, J-Start Victory Vs., featuring some of the most famous comics and anime characters in Japan in set battles. To promote it, they created an installation in front of the PARCO department store in Shibuya, a giant diorama if you will. We are pretty used to anime and manga characters coming alive in statues and life sized figure recently, but this one takes it a step further by working with props and the pavement itself. Very fun and very popular with both adults and kids walking past. You can see the official homepage of the game here. The characters in this unlikely stand off are Dragon Ball Z’s Goku (孫悟空) and One Piece’s Monkey D. Luffy (モンキー・D・ルフィ). The characters will be duking it out until the 23rd of March, so if you are in Tokyo during the week and the weekend, there’s still time to see this!

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Kinnikuman Snack

Posted in Shops, Stuff by tokyobling on February 16, 2014

The convenience store chain Familymart released a limited edition nikuman hot bun snack in the form of the famous comic book super hero Kinnikuman (キン肉マン). It was the third in a series of nikuman snacks in the shape of comic book characters. Kinnikuman is the story of bumbling super hero that has been going since 1979 and has by now sold well over 53 million books in Japan alone. Despite the super hero getting his power from garlic, that particular onion was not heavily featured in the recipe, strangely enough. Although nikuman are usually about 110 yen, this one came in at 180 yen.

You can see another character inspired nikuman at the end of this post, and a couple of photos of the real thing in Yokohama Chinatown.

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